Booting OpenMandriva 4.2 live off ext4 partition


I always had OpenMandriva boot live off a USB with ext4 partition. Sometimes I have to modify the live initramfs and it is ok. With version 4.2, the ext4 support seems to be missing.

How can I obtain the kernel and its configuration for the initramfs in order to add ext4 support to it.

If you can provide me with some information of how it is built I would be very grateful.

Thank you in advance

@linuxero welcome.

Thanks for your question. Someone will reply you asap.

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First knowledge wise I am just another user. Most people would burn the ISO to a flash drive/usb stick that is formatted fat32 or exfat. Then boot that. I do not think it matters what filesystem type the flash drive is formatted as anyway.

As I understand things when an OM Lx .iso file is “burned” to a flash drive this is literally copying the .iso to the flash drive so what is in the .iso file is going to be what is on the flash drive. As I understand things for OM Lx ISO’s that is going to be a 2+ GB squashfs partition and a tiny fat16 partition for UEFI booting.

Given that when a user installs OM Lx the default file system type is ext4 I do not understand what is missing about ext4 support.

FWIW “burning” an OM Lx .iso file to a flash drive is normally using some version of dd command. The OpenMandriva recommended command to burn an .iso file to a flash drive is, and has been:

$ sudo dd if=<iso_name> of=<usb_drive> bs=4M

Replace <iso_name> with the path to the ISO and <usb_drive> with the device node of the USB drive, such as /dev/sdb. The recommended ROSA Image Writer is simply a front end to run that command. (I believe SUSE Studio ImageWriter also does exactly the same.)

Thank you Ben for your input. Here I am going to clear a few things up:

  1. My USB is actually a 2TB M.2 disk.
  2. I boot Windows installation, Haiku, FreeBSD, MacOS and different Linux distros off it, not to mention a shared NTFS partition.
  3. My set-up is to boot on Legacy and UEFI systems.
  4. dd, Isosumper, Etcher, Rufus, MS Boot Creation Tool…and the like; all kill the space on my disk and suppose that I have one partition on which one system would rule. (Somehow, with differences)

Now I checked the dracut config of OMV build tool and there is no support for EXT4 in the build. Of course EXT4 is supported as soon as the SQFS image is mounted, but my issue is just a step before.

So I might be going to use OMV ISO build tool in order to create my own spin supporting EXT4. The other issue I will have to deal with is the build of AMD version, since I do not have an AMD machine.

That is why I asked if there is another way to add EXT4 support without rebuilding the whole thing anew :slight_smile:

Have a good morning everybody

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Huh? Do you mean m.2 SSD? When you say USB I think you are talking about USB flash drive. Your post would make more sense if we are talking about a m.2 SSD but there is still something I find confusing.

I still do not understand this. Why would you think we would or could remove support for ext4 when that is the default fs for OM Lx.

I am OM QA Team member and do a lot of testing. I have installed all versions of OM Lx. Literally 100’s of installations on hardware and in VirtualBox. Most of the time I use ext4 as default file system for /, /home, and /Data partitions. I do not recall any problem with using ext4 fs ever. (Occasionally I do tests using f2fs, xfs, of btrfs for / and /home.)

Right now I am typing this post on an OM Lx 4.2 system installed on ext4 file system. So I am clueless as to what support may be missing.

Note: /boot/efi partition is always formatted as FAT32. (This is partly because OM Lx has to be compatible with booting Windows.)

This system is:

This is the OM Lx 4.2 system I refer to in post above:

You can see that /, /home, /Data1, and /Data2 are all formatted ext4. /boot/efi is formatted fat32.

The Sabrent Rocket is a 1TB Rocket 4 PLUS NVMe 4.0 Gen4 PCIe M.2 Internal SSD Solid State Drive.

Hi Ben;

Sorry, my bad. Actually the M.2 is connected with a USB3 adapter. That is why I said USB. PICS attached.

I have also created a video of the boot process. You can check it on my site.

The videos are OMV1.MOV, OMV2.MOV on the same site.

Maybe I am doing something wrong. Please correct me if so.

BTW; I would love to help with OMV if someone could guide me with packaging :slight_smile:

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I found this link also. Please check line 13 of the file:

The line with filesystems :wink:

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For this go to #openmandriva-cooker @ Freenode IRC. Alternatively if you prefer matrix you can go here and click on Chat and find #openmandrva-cooker there. IRC is not instant communication, it is common that one needs to be patient but someone will answer in time.

I’ll have to look at this when I get time. Also you probably will get better advice from developers at the Cooker channel on IRC.

I don’t understand what or how you are doing it. Which means little since I am humble user. However I suspect this is the commit where you lost to ability to boot like you have been in the past.

I also do not know why it was desirable to remove support for the other fs types. That is for developers to explain.

Good morning;

Well; I guess that explains it. OMV 4.2 cannot boot live off ext4. I really do not understand it either. I mean there is support for btrfs, but not ext4. Moreover there is support for NTFS as well.

I hope a developer could shed some light on this and help me fix the issue.

Thank you again Ben.

Don’t give up. This is very much a situation where you want to go on IRC and talk to @TPG about this. On IRC he is usually tpg or some variation of TPG. Also bero and crazy might be able to help you to find a way to get this to work. Or they could explain why it was important to remove that support.

Or tell if we can make a separate installer for this use case?

Ask Why this needed to be removed? Any consequences to bring it back?

We are a small group all volunteer, part-time, unpaid contributors and sometimes this has advantages. Granted there are disadvantages also.

If you have some skills you could end up working with them on these packages.

What you are doing may fit in with @bero’s effort to get well working real OpenMandriva Lx on low cost hardware with aarch64. Boxes for € 150 that willl actually function as a reasonably functional desktop or notebook.

It is late. Hope this makes sense and is helpful.

Did find the Videos. Whether I am smart enough to understand is the next test. :confused: :boom: :thinking:

I have just registered with NickServ as moxero. I have posed my question about ext4 there hoping that someone would have the time to answer soon.

I am glad to help. Packaging is something that is going on my mind lately, even though I could be helpful in other areas as well.

We’ll see.


on ISO we left only filesystems that works with ISO live booting:

filesystems+=" vfat msdos isofs squashfs ntfs nls_cp437 nls_iso8859-1 nls_utf8 "

As it was said before, we could not find any use case of having support for other filesystems as listed above. I may add ext4 there, but that would mean to add other filesystems.


Thanks for joining in. So what do you suggest that I can do in my case.

Could I only boot the original iso and rebuild initramfs adding `filesystems+=" ext4 " to the file in /etc?

I agree with you. Most people just copy the ISO onto a USB using some tool. In my case I need to use the USB for other purposes as well, and being able to boot OMV live from it is an add-on.

So here you have one use case :smile:

That was interesting in removing ext4. I booting from USB and DVD on the live ISO. I believe DVD using iso9660. Considering other use cases, adding ext4 keeps other options open without comprising the size of the ISO (USB size or DVD size).